Skip to main content

Determination of the lactose and galactose content of cheese for use in the galactosaemia diet

Buy Article:

$51.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)


Abstract Background: 

Treatment of galactosaemia requires a low galactose diet. In the UK, traditionally, all cheeses have been excluded from the diet, although some types of mature hard cheese are likely to be low in lactose and galactose. The present study aimed to determine the lactose and galactose content of mature cheeses. Methods: 

Over 6 years, the UK Galactosaemia Support Group commissioned the analysis of 109 samples (by two laboratories) of 12 cheese types, in eight batches throughout the year. Cheeses, obtained from retail outlets, were homogenised, sugars were extracted using water or 40% alcohol for fatty samples, and samples were deproteinised. Enzymatic analysis using measuring light absorbance was conducted on filtered extracts. Results: 

Cheeses containing undetectable quantities of lactose (<2.8 mg 100 g−1, Leatherhead Food International, Leatherhead, UK (LFI) analysis; <10 mg 100 g−1, Laboratory of Government Chemist, Teddington, UK (LGC Limited) analysis) and galactose were: Gruyere (five samples); Emmental (block, sliced and grated) (16 samples); Jarlsberg (six samples); Parmigiano Reggiano and Grana Padano Italian Parmesan (block and grated) (16 samples); and mature Cheddar cheese from the UK West Country Farmhouse Cheese Makers Association (35 samples) only. Lactose containing cheeses included other mature Cheddar cheeses, Gouda and Edam. Conclusions: 

Gruyere, Emmental, Jarlsberg, Italian Parmesan (Parmigiano Reggiano and Grana Padano), and mature Cheddar cheese produced in one area of England where the manufacturing process is standardised and guaranteed are now allowed in the UK galactosaemia diet.

Keywords: cheese; galactosaemia; galactose; lactose

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Medical Advisory Panel, Galactosaemia Support Group UK, West Midlands, UK 2: Birmingham Children’s Hospital, Birmingham, UK

Publication date: 2009-10-01

  • Access Key
  • Free ContentFree content
  • Partial Free ContentPartial Free content
  • New ContentNew content
  • Open Access ContentOpen access content
  • Partial Open Access ContentPartial Open access content
  • Subscribed ContentSubscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed ContentPartial Subscribed content
  • Free Trial ContentFree trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more